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Martin recalls his moment of FA Cup magic

Match-winner Chris Martin revealed his delight after his late, sweet strike ensured City’s place in the Fourth Round of the Emirates FA Cup.

The forward powered the ball home, picking out the top corner inside the 83rd minute as City restored their lead to overcome Portsmouth at Ashton Gate.

Famara Diédhiou had put the Robins ahead, prior to Callum Johnson’s low shot to equalise on the stroke of half-time.

Pompey threatened to make it a nervy second half. Dan Bentley pulled off some smart saves after a quiet first 45 minutes, before Martin popped up with a marvellous strike to ensure City would advance in the Cup and start 2021 with a win.

“We’re delighted to be in the hat,” said Martin, who hopes for a “nice home draw” when the Fourth Round fixtures are confirmed on Monday night (January 11th). “We spoke before how it was going to be a tough game, Portsmouth are a team going well in League One so I’m delighted to be in the draw.”

WATCH CHRIS MARTIN'S ROBINS TV INTERVIEW

He watched on as his strike sailed past Craig MacGillivray, though Martin felt he should have scored earlier.

Recalling the moment, Martin said: The ball dropped and I heard Mapps (Mariappa) shouting to the side of me but I felt like hitting one and I was delighted to see it sail into the top corner.

Diédhiou netted the opener

“I probably should have scored in the first half when Fam (Diédhiou) rolled me through. I had an unfortunate one where the ball hit my standing leg 10/15 minutes before the goal and that’s exactly what I was trying to do the first time, so lucky that it went in the second time.”

Martin on the move

City had been on the backfoot for spells in the second half with Martin’s goal coming against the run of play. However, Martin hailed the team’s ability to pull through.

Martin continued: “I think we showed togetherness and spirit, then we showed quality in both the goals which was the deciding factor. We felt we should’ve been clearer than 1-1 at half-time with my opportunity and other openings. We were disappointing to go in at 1-1 after what was a soft goal to concede.

“We weren’t at the levels we wanted to be at in the second half. We gave it away under pressure too often in our eagerness to get forward too quickly, but we showed the fighting spirit and nick it at the end.

Bentley pulled off a last-gasp save as Pompey tried to force extra-time

City now prepare to return to Sky Bet Championship action, with a midweek trip to Brentford (Wednesday, January 13th, 7pm KO) and looking forward Martin said: “This was a game a lot of people expected us to win but that win breeds confidence moving into Wednesday.

“I think the reason the manager chose a strong team today was to try and get into that winning habit, create the mentality we need to stand us in good stead going forward.

“It will be a tough game Wednesday but we’re now going it off the back of a late win which feels very good!”

Brentford versus City will be streamed live on Robins TV.

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